According to the consultancy firm, Sightlines, most campus buildings were constructed prior to 1975. Buildings from that era have long since passed the typical timeframe for renewal of space and systems such as HVAC, electrical and plumbing. The firm also contends that the renovation of older buildings is often postponed in favor of new construction, creating a growing backlog of maintenance requests.
The ability to easily quantify and track these requests and the projects associated is a key element in gaining approved spend. By instituting a systematic service management solution that is integrated with project portfolio management, schools can track tickets related to projects and conversely can initiate projects from tickets.
This approach gives the institution far more insight as to the true economic impact and benefits associated with various buildings.
According to the report, in 2015, public campuses had an average backlog of over $108 per Gross Square Foot (GSF). Maintenance backlogs for private campuses averaged $88 per GSF, about 19 percent lower. Remember that private campuses invest about $0.50 more per GSF than public campuses, which may explain some of the difference. Still, the backlog in maintenance, modernization, and infrastructure has grown steadily for both public and private institutions since 2007.
In light of these challenges and increased demand, having a standard for prioritizing work and communicating the status and outcome is essential.
Prioritize Service and Maintenance
By implementing a service management solution with project portfolio planning, schools can easily communicate the status of requests and projects (for preventative maintenance, renewals, and new construction) that can be displayed for all key stakeholders. By creating transparency and visibility, there can be an increased focus on discussion and joint planning. This approach allows facility managers to become more of a strategic partner with the rest of the institution.